“The purpose of business is to create and keep a customer.”- Bill Gates.
As a customer to many products or services providers, e-Commerce companies, banks, vendors, etc., I find it rather intriguing to find how businesses meticulously keep track of my day-to-day activities, send me notifications, messages on new offers, services and also address too many of my needs, as and when they arise!
Of course, there may be hundreds, probably millions of them to serve and yet, most businesses succeed in exceeding ‘my’ expectations and keep me hooked to their products and services for a considerably long period. They have no secret sauce. Customer relationship management or CRM platform is what that helps a business engage and interact with countless customers like me, while also understanding their needs and addressing it accordingly.
Off late, CRM solutions have grown in leaps and bounds with the collaboration of disruptive technology like the cloud, social media, mobile and analytics.
The relevance of cloud-based CRM platforms in enterprise community has grown rapidly alongside the rise of trends such as BYOD and automation. Today CRM is at the core of every business operation that taps into colossal volumes of customer data and information to translate into meaningful business results.
AI and CRM
The question of whether businesses can do without a CRM solution has done its bit of rounds across industries. However, by guaranteeing increased sales efficiency and better revenue generation in the existing layout of ever-changing market trends and business needs, many custom CRM development services companies have silenced critics.
Now as the adoption rates of mobile CRM software surges throughout 2018, the overall market is ready to embrace the new collaborations and upgrades from technology segments like AI. This would change the bottom-line for businesses by helping them have an edge over their competitors and provide superior customer services. All enterprises need to do is to lay back, adding more sense to sales and customers’ data by leveraging the components of AI—machine learning algorithms, natural language and generation, speech recognition and intelligent robots.
Below are some of the transformations that AI-powered tools can bring to CRM solutions to complement the operational skills of sales and customer services to take businesses to new heights:
- Increased Use of Virtual Assistants and Chatbots: Self-service is one the compelling ways of addressing customer queries and as per latest statistical data, most online customers are discouraged to carry on with their purchases and buying activities if they are not provided with quick responses and answers from customer support. Linking CRM solutions with self-service features through chat bots and virtual assistants help solve this problem and allow automation of customer services. It also guarantees cost-efficiency by replacing customer service executives and contact centers.
- Lead Generation by Creating Social and Virtual Communities: CRM solutions with social media integration can help create strong network for marketing and lead generation by casting its web wide across social and virtual communities. Moreover, these CRM solutions often comprise of features that help track and measure subtle changes in brand metrics, define relevant KPIs and observe customer behavior across social networks for targeting and engaging new and existing customers.
- Rise of AI-driven CRM Platforms: Besides introducing highly customizable CRM solutions to businesses, CIOs would be considering the option of implementing AI-powered CRM solutions like Einstein from SalesForce, AI-driven S/4HANA cloud ERP or the Oracle’s cloud AI project, Adaptive Intelligence. These CRM platforms with superior capabilities simplify data analysis, automating sales and marketing operations and interpret customer behavior at the snap of the finger.
- Automation across Workflows and Operations: Automation seems to be the flavor of the season for all businesses of all sizes and industries. One can’t ignore the ample benefits that AI can bring across workflows and daily business operations through CRM solutions that are optimized to automate manual processes and reduce redundant actions to enable decision making and increase productivity across marketing, customer support services, sales, customer relations, etc.
- Creation of Realistic Targets and Road Map-driven Approaches: CRM solutions that are driven by AI tools help businesses accurately track and predict trends, possibilities and opportunities by leveraging analytics, predictive analytics, data mining, etc. Insights drawn out of these tools help analyse customer behaviors, set real business targets, allocate budgets, train staff and personnel and accordingly set plan of actions.
- Increased Customer Satisfaction and Retention: When AI-enabled CRM helps businesses address the C of the CRM by managing data deluge and customer information and vest attention, investment and resources towards delivering superior customer services. Once the customer satisfaction levels are increased, it can translate into better business outcomes and lesser customer churn.
Amidst these evolving trends, businesses are turning towards custom CRM software over out-of-the-box solutions due to increased cost factors and complexities in frequent upgrades. Besides, businesses need to look at the compatibility factor before signing up for any trending software their rival organizations are adopting.
CRM solutions have managed to free firms and enterprises from the hassles of paper-work and redundant workflows that exclusively needed manual attention. With the infusion of innovative tools and technology solutions in core areas like customer relations, businesses of today demonstrate the long-term benefits that CRM solution offer. Mobility and automation will be the key concern behind the adoption of solutions from custom CRM software development services companies across the world.